One of the most wonderful experiences for any woman is motherhood. It can really be a moment of excitement when a new born child comes into the world. But when the baby finally arrives, you have to shoulder some responsibilities in order to take good care of the baby. While some mothers decide to use formulas to feed their babies, a lot of wise mothers choose to breastfeed. If you are one of those mothers who decided to breastfeed, it is important that you also make good choices with the things you eat (so you can pass on the benefit to your baby).
Health, Volume and Quality
Mothers should make dietary adjustments when breastfeeding in order to maintain their own health and create a healthy supply of milk. Breast milk gives an enormous amount of antibody protection to the baby; this aids in fighting all sorts of infections and illnesses during infancy and the early years of childhood. Thus, it is a very serious and important endeavor. Correct eating choices will enable a mother to provide optimal volume and quality of breast milk for her infant. If you lack nourishment, then the milk produced is not of the highest quality and your own health will suffer as well.
A mother who breast feeds usually produces 24 to 27 ounces of milk every day. In order to produce this amount of milk, the mother will have to burn about 500 calories per day. In order to do this, the mother needs quality breast feeding diet.
- The mother's food intake should include up to 2,500 calories a day so that she will have sufficient energy and nutrients, while the remaining is used to create milk for the baby. Be sure to consume the calories in small meals, about six meals a day.
- The process of producing quality milk will be at its best if the mother consumes low-fat dairy products, vegetables, and fruits on a regular basis. During a meal, try to eat foods low in fat and include a variety of vegetables of different colors.
- It is also important to consume plenty of water during each meal. When breast feeding, never drink alcoholic beverages because this will pass on to the milk in less than an hour. Your child's growth will be affected if he consumes large amount of it in the milk. You should also avoid taking any medication when nursing your baby. You still have to consult your doctor in case you need to take a medication.
- Avoid caffeinated beverages (e.g. coffee, tea, sodas) and foods (e.g. chocolate). Caffeine will be passed to your baby through your milk (making it hard for the baby to settle down or sleep).
It is also important to avoid all types of pollutants such as pesticide residue and nicotine to keep the milk healthy. You may be tempted to eat sweets, but always try to limit your intake or totally ignore them. Always keep in mind that what you eat will indeed be passed on to your baby. So always make a wise choice when it comes to your diet in order to have a healthy and happy baby.